Call for Code

Team eMotion wins A/NZ Call for Code April Hackathon

Share this post:

Author: DeveloperSteve Coochin, Developer Advocate, IBM Developer

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every one of us around the world in so many ways. As a developer one of the things I love is using my developer superpowers for good, and in particular, helping people build out solutions that can change the world.

Call for Code, now in its third year, is one of IBM’s programs aimed at helping create solutions that take on global societal issues like the pandemic at hand. Over the last two years, we have seen over 210,000 developers, data scientists and problem solvers submit over 8000 submissions globally.

This year we extended the Call for Code program to encompass the COVID-19 pandemic, with a focus on Crisis Communication, Remote Education and Community Cooperation.

We recently ran our first virtual hackathon, which was virtually hosted by The Hive in regional Orange, NSW. The event helps get teams up and running with team formation, ideation and scalability.

A/NZ really stepped up to answer the Call for Code challenge

We saw some fantastic ideas over the weekend with over 15 teams building out solutions.

Over the two day event, some of our partners joined us for the hackathon including TelstraDev, Here Maps, Twilio, and the Australian Red Cross who joined us for a 2nd year as part of the regions Call for Code program.

Ebony Gaylor, head of mobile and social change at the Australian Red Cross, helped give teams some inspirational insights into some of the social challenges we face in the region, particularly around social change.

As part of the weekend, we also ran a live mini-conference which was streamed on  IBM Developer Twitch in the afternoon of day one.

Our partners shared ways to integrate and build apps utilising IBM Developer tools and resources plus ways to integrate with additional services to create some rich app experiences.

Leon Gouletsas and Rahul Soans from IBM also ran a 2-hour design thinking livestream to assist with team ideation, utilising some of the IBM Garage design thinking techniques.

With a long list of mentors wanting to share their experience and knowledge, the virtual hackathon teams worked well into Saturday night as ideas turned into scalable solutions.

Our esteemed judges were faced with some tough decisions. Ben Peterson (IBM), Ebony Gaylor (Australian Red Cross), and Craig Murphy (Performance IT) were looking for solutions that solved identified problems and could scale well with user adoption.

And the winners are …

Second place went to team Mingle which was comprised of Kai Yang, Rohan Carroll,

Paritosh Dhebar and Sallie Kendall. The team built out a feature-rich app in 24 hours around Watson Speech to Text which adds more interactivity to remote learning.

The team that came in first place was eMotion, who built out a solution to also assist with remote learning. With a diverse skillset that covered Design Thinking, UX/UI and deep technical expertise, Jemma Vandali, Phil Williams, Shouryadipta Ghosh and Chris Bossard (who won Call for Code 2019 in Melbourne) were able to leverage their learnings and experience to build the app in 24 hours.

“eMotion uses Watson sentiment analysis, so teachers know when students need a break to power up their energy, ” Jemma Vandali said in the team’s video submission.

Using the code samples from IBM Developer, the team created a MEAN stack on Cloud Foundry using a toolchain, utilising a CI/CD pipeline. This meant that the team could reiterate and deploy faster as the app was built-out.

To find out more about eMotion check out their video submission below.

Teams from the Australian and New Zealand virtual hackathon will now submit projects to the global challenge. First prize is USD 200,000 and teams from IBM will align to help the team scale and open source the winning solution.

A massive thank you from all of us here at IBM Developer to those who got involved over the weekend. We had some fantastic partners, mentors and judges over the course of the weekend who gave up their time to help teams build-out. An especially big thank you goes out to all the participants who took part working late into the night building out their amazing ideas.

Join the Fight. Form a Team. Impact the World

If you couldn’t make the weekend’s virtual hack there is still time, submissions for the accelerated timeline are open until the 27th of April.  You can also join one of the upcoming hackathons below. We need your help to build out solutions to help impact the world.

Or you can enter the global competition here.


More Call for Code stories

Why companies are embracing sustainability

From heating buildings to building solar farms, corporations are listening to their customers and investing in technologies to reduce carbon emissions. As concerns about the damaging effects of climate change continue to grow, businesses across Australia both big and small are increasingly taking the lead on environmental action, setting science-based targets and implementing the required […]

Continue reading

Ushering in a new era for the Telco industry

By Steve O’Donnell, Managing Partner, IBM NZ Global Business Services There is a rapidly growing need in the telecommunications industry for a new network architecture. Emerging technologies, such as virtualisation, 5G, edge computing, AI and machine learning (ML), are ushering in a new era supported by cloud, often referred to as the digital era, the […]

Continue reading

Stopping wine fraud with technology

Counterfeiting wine is big business in Australia but new innovations in blockchain will make it harder for scammers to rip off customers. Grosset wines, nestled in the rolling hills of the Clare Valley, is small in terms of production but has had an outsized influence on Australia’s wine scene. Famed wine connoisseur James Halliday says […]

Continue reading